« Protesters, including many young people, took to the streets of Tokyo on Monday to call for action on climate change, as well as an end to nuclear power and fossil fuel energy production.
« We believe that the voices of citizens are being completely ignored », claimed organiser, Akiko Yoshida. « We will show the voice of citizens to the government. »
Footage shows the march in the Shibuya district, with protesters holding flags and banners reading ‘protect our future’ and ‘no nukes, no fossil’.
Some referenced the Japanese government’s decision to release treated radioactive water from the damaged Fukushima power plant, which has seen condemnation from the local community and neighbouring countries such as China.
« The government says it’s treated water, treated water, but in the case of radioactivity, no matter how small the amount, there is no way to prevent contamination, so I think we are in real trouble, » said Kenichi.
The current administration’s plan to discharge the water into the Pacific Ocean was backed by the International Atomic Energy Agency, which claimed the impact would be ‘negligible.’
« I think Japanese society had to change after that nuclear accident » stated Oyama. « I thought that with this many people gathered together, we could change things, but it was really difficult to change, and government has been returning to nuclear power plants. »
« The younger generation is also very angry and strongly feels the need to change things, » she added.
Others were concerned about the need for climate action, with unusually high temperatures recorded worldwide in recent years.
« I think it will be even hotter next year, and even hotter the year after that, and then when these children grow up and have children, they will not be able to live the lives I am able to lead now. I am really worried, » said Kamei.
« I really believe that this is about the future of the next generation, » Ai added. « It is very hot today, we adults must speak up for the future and say that this weather and climate not the norm. »
Organisers reported that around 8,000 people took part in the protest. »